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“Renel” is a re-arrangement of the word “Erlen”. Apparently
these were sister theatres. They were indeed within walking
distance of each other in the West Oak Lane neighborhood.
Also walking-distance away was the Cheltenham theatre, a relative
latecomer opening about 1961.
The Erlen had a very bright electric sign on the roof.
This comment is specifically addressed to putman.
Putman, on your April 8 2004 posting, you mention:
“Contact me if you’d like to know why the theatre really
closed”. You neglected, however, to provide a contact
e-mail address. Will you please post your e-mail address
The Devon Theatre is actually located in Philadelphia.
Mayfair is the name of the district where it is located.
Apparently the Devon was a porno house for much of the
The theatre was very similar (identical?)
to the (Fox) Town & Country Theatre in
The Renel was, indeed, a very nice neighborhood
(West Oak Lane) theatre. Supposedly, it was sister
theatre to the Erlen which was also in West Oak
Lane. (Renel is a rearrangement of the letters
The Cheltenham Theatre was also walking-distance
The Cheltenham Theatre opened about 1961. It was
really a classy place. They did an excellent job
of presenting films. They almost certainly had
70mm capability (I don’t know for sure as I was
a pre-teen at the time and didn’t follow technical
The theatre was part of the Cheltenham Shopping
Center but it was more-or-less stand-alone (not
part of the main mall).
I enjoyed “Spartacus”, “The Great Escape”, a re-
released “South Pacific” and “Mary Poppins” there.
Come to think of it, the Cheltenham must have been
stiff competition for Glenside’s Keswick Theatre,
only about 3 miles away and also operated at the
time by Stanley-Warner.